How to Open a Lithuanian Shop in Stratford
Aim: To determine whether there is scope for a new Lithuanian shop in Stratford.
In order to determine whether there is scope for a new Lithuanian shop, the following objectives were identified:
- Analyse the general background for a Lithuanian shop.
- Analyse the local market for a Lithuanian shop in terms of competition.
- Analyse the local market for a Lithuanian shop in terms of consumers.
- Collect information to make a sales forecast to identify the selling price of Lithuanian produce, estimated demand, capacity and estimated sales revenue.
- Obtain cost information and complete a cash flow forecast to identify estimated cash inflows and outflows per month to gauge whether a new Lithuanian shop would be profitable and thus feasible.
- Carry out break even calculations to identify the break even point for a Lithuanian shop to gauge whether the business would be profitable and thus a viable idea.
- Consider all elements of the marketing mix for the Lithuanian shop, including product, price, promotion and place.
- Conduct a SWOT analysis to identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats associated with a Lithuanian shop.
Conduct a P.E.S.T. analysis in order to analyse the feasibility of the Lithuanian shop.
Analyse the information and make a decision as to whether the idea of a Lithuanian shop in Stratford is worth pursuing.
Conduct an investment appraisal in order to receive an estimate of the amount of time it will take for a Lithuanian shop to break even and estimated profits associated with it.
Evaluate and make judgments about the Lithuanian shop’s future.
In order to achieve the objectives outlined above, the following methodology was incorporated into the investigation:
- Use 2 methods of Primary Research and appropriate sampling of the market to gauge whether demand exists and if so, the number of customers, their characteristics, and what they demand in terms of a Lithuanian shop with the aim of analyzing the market in terms of consumers.
- Use secondary research from sources such as Mintel and Keynote to find whether there is an already established demand for a Lithuanian shop in order to analyse the general background.
- Geographically map competitors to identify their influence on demand and whether the Lithuanian shop is too saturated in order to analyse the local market in terms of competition.
- Conduct a marketing mix and analyse how it will affect the feasibility of the Lithuanian shop.
- Research and identify all costs associated with starting up the Lithuanian shop in order to help produce a cash flow.
- Use data from sales and costs forecasts to produce a cash flow forecast for the first 12 months.
- Identify whether the Lithuanian shop will be profitable by using the research on start up costs.
- Calculate break even to gauge profitability and feasibility of the Lithuanian shop.
- Conduct an investment appraisal of starting the Lithuanian shop.
- Use the sales forecast, cost forecast, cash flow, break-even and investment appraisal to justify the decision.
- Consider the qualitative factors identified in the SWOT analysis that might affect the success of the Lithuanian shop with the aim of identifying strengths and weaknesses of the Lithuanian shop.
- Conclude and comment on the future of the Lithuanian shop by using analysis of both qualitative factors and the analysis of data.
The feasibility study will be based on the concept of opening a Lithuanian shop in Stratford. The new Lithuanian store would be established under the name of “The Lithuanian Sunset” to inspire a sense of romanticism into the hearts of weary Lithuanians. The “The Lithuanian Sunset” would be established as a partnership consisting of two partners, myself and my close Lithuanian friend Eimantas Gudonis. The latter has an insight into the Lithuanian traditions, culture and values as well as a part time job as an undertaker which would help to inject a certain amount of capital into the business. Whereas, the former is currently undertaking a Business Studies course at an advanced level and thus has some knowledge as to how businesses startup and operate which would in turn prove vital when starting up a new business. In addition, both partners are able to speak Lithuanian, Russian and English languages all of which would prove critical when communicating with different customers and dealing with the business.
The initial idea of a Lithuanian shop has sprung into my head whilst I was shopping with my mother in Stratford Shopping Centre when my mother remembered that she needed to pop into a Lithuanian shop called “The Brother’s Food Store” to get some bread and sausage, both of which were unavailable elsewhere. Alarmed by the endless queue in the dingy store in the middle of the inn shops with people standing like robots with their baskets full, I have realised that the rationale for the immense number of Lithuanians shopping at “The Brother’s Food Store” can be wholly attributed to the lack of choice Lithuanians have rather than personal preference for the store. “The Brother’s Food Store” operates as a monopoly in the Lithuanian produce market in Stratford which in effect, allows “The Brother’s Food Store” to charge sky-high prices for their products and enjoy great profit margins by continually hitting the customer in the pocket knowing that they would come back. However, a new value-for-money store would be a nail in the coffin for “The Brother’s Food Store” as most customers would happily switch their loyalty to the new Lithuanian shop providing cheaper produce.
Since Lithuania has joined the E.U. the Lithuanian community in Stratford has been growing on an unprecedented scale. Like magnet being attracted to steel, Lithuanians are inseparable with their deep-rooted culture, values and traditions which would be advantageous thing for a new Lithuanian shop since the process of building a customer base would happen much by itself. A new Lithuanian shop would aim to cater for the needs of all Lithuanians ranging from smoked meat and dairy products for families to chilled beer for exhausted workers. The main products range for “The Lithuanian Sunset” is most likely to consist of press, confectionary, frozen foods, beverages, bakeries, smoked meat, seafood and, DVDs and music.
The ever so increasing number of Lithuanians in Stratford community is heralding a potential for a lucrative and yet scratched but unexploited market.